“Give it a go Tomas I think you will enjoy it.”
Tomas looked over at his grandmother from the table where he was sitting. Her back to him as she peeled apples for the apple pie she was making for dinner.
“Gran I don’t think I’d be suited for something like that.”
“Sure you would. It would be perfect for you and you should find something to do with your summer break instead of sitting around here keeping me company.”
Tomas rolled his eyes behind his grandmother’s back. He was grateful for everything she had done for him since his parents divorce. It had been a messy affair and his grandmother, his father’s mother, had come and taken him away when he was fifteen.
It had been the best thing for him to happen and three years later he was still living with her. His mother had tried to talk him into living with her but because she didn’t like his sexuality he declined. He still kept in contact with his father but it was best for Tomas to be with his grandmother.
He had not seen his grandmother for over six years before she came for him. And when she did come for him she just walked in told his parents she was taking him and they left – just like that. No one messed with his grandmother.
She spent her life travelling the world working for various organizations helping the poorer nations. Tomas loved listening to her stories and the stories from people that always came to visit her. His grandmother was always involved in many fund raising events, some of them often involving celebrities and Tomas was very proud of his grandmother.
“Come on, get off your lazy butt and go down to the community centre, it wouldn’t hurt you to help out. I certainly know they could use good men like you.”
His grandmother had finished peeling the apples and was wiping her hands on her apron, while looking over at him.
Tomas sighed, “Fine I’ll go down and talk to them about it.”
“Thank you Tomas. You’ll make a great big brother to someone I just know it and I think it would do you good to be the mentor of some young boy.”
Tomas would have rolled his eyes again if his grandmother was not still looking at him; instead he smiled and getting up said, “Well I’ll be off them.”
“Great, I’ll see you back here later. Take your time and maybe see what else is going on at the center today. There might be something else you can get involved in.”
Tomas went around the table and gave his grandmother a kiss on the cheek.
“Have fun Tomas.” She told him.
“Yeah, I’ll try.” She gave him a playful smack on the butt and Tomas smiled and left out the back door.
He knew his grandmother only wanted him to make the most of his life but he had gone through so much drama with his parents, coming out and losing friends at his old school, not to mention the harassment. He certainly didn’t get any of that at the new school his grandmother had sent him too but that was because he had learnt his lesson the first time and told no one he was gay. And he didn’t try to make new friends. There were some he sometimes hung out with but in general he kept to himself. Now that he had graduated though he hoped things might be a little different in college.
Slowly, he made his way towards the community center to join the Big Brother program over the summer holiday because his grandmother thought it would be good for him. Maybe she was right but Tomas didn’t feel very comfortable about the idea of being some kid’s big brother, especially being that he was gay.
After walking the twenty minutes to the center Tomas made his way hesitantly inside and asked the women at the center about the Big Brother program.
“You would like to join the Big Brother program?” She asked.
“Yes if that is alright.”
“Yes of course. If you head down the corridor on your left there will be a large room where you can register.”
Tomas thanked the women and made his way towards to direction she indicated. At the double doors to the large room Tomas stopped and looked around the room. There were several older people standing around a table talking, a family off to one side and another group of three people, two boys and a girl talking against one of the walls. Tomas took a deep breath and walked into the room. A women who looked very much like his own grandmother, tall, grey hair pulled back from her face and dressed elegantly, broke away from the group of older people and came over to him.